News Article | 6/5/2007


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Hillwood recently completed construction on a 400,000 square-foot build-to-suit distribution center in Jacksonville, Fla. for Laney & Duke, one of the premier logistics companies in Florida. The building is located at 12400 Presidents Court in Norfolk Southern Railroad’s Westlake Industrial Park on the Westside.

“The record activity at JAXPORT, the start of construction on the TraPac terminal and the soon-to-be established Asian service have increased the demand for industrial space and logistics services in northeast Florida,” said Brian Duke, president of Laney & Duke. “With this new facility, Laney & Duke now has close to 1.5 million square feet of space, which provides us tremendous flexibility to manage the logistics needs of our current customers, to better market to potential customers and to offer sub-lease opportunities to meet the growing demand for industrial space.”

Hillwood and Laney & Duke selected the site in Westlake Industrial Park because the development is strategically located as evidenced by the major facilities already located there for UPS, BJ’s Wholesale Club and Southeast Toyota. The 400,000 square-foot build-to-suit also is a key addition for Laney & Duke, because it is the company’s first cross-dock facility and features dock levelers to better accommodate intermodal containers.

The new build-to-suit features outstanding access to the Interstate 295 loop; to I-95, the major north-south connector on the East Coast; and to Interstate 10, the major east-west route through the southern United States. With the convergence of interstate highways, major railroads and JAXPORT, Jacksonville has become a key distribution point for Florida, the fourth most populous state in the country.

As part of the original deal, Hillwood purchased an existing 360,998 square-foot building, located at 2855 Faye Rd. in Jacksonville, from Laney & Duke, which now leases that facility.

In March at JAXPORT, construction began on a major new terminal, which is expected to open in late 2008. The terminal, which will double the port’s current capacity, will be operated by TraPac, a division of Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL). One of the world’s leading shipping companies, MOL also has announced that it will establish the first direct from Asia to Jacksonville all-water container service.

The Army Corps of Engineers also has been given initial approval to dredge the federal channel serving JAXPORT, thus allowing it to be the first U.S. port of call for the world’s largest container ships passing through the Panama Canal beginning in 2014, when the improvements to the canal are expected to be completed. Last October voters of Panama approved a $5.25 billion expansion project that, when complete, will allow the world’s largest ships to traverse the waterway. Currently only ships with capacity for 4,500 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent containers) can fit through the canal. The expansion will accommodate ships with loads of up to 12,000 TEUs.

For over 75 years Laney & Duke has been fulfilling the logistics, warehousing, and transportation needs of some of the most successful companies in the United States. As one of the premier logistics management companies in Florida, the company has worked with many Fortune 500 companies, such as Sara Lee, Proctor and Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive Company, Georgia-Pacific, Walgreen’s, TJ Lipton, and Nestle Foods, as well as Tire Kingdom and all of the well known Tobacco Companies.

Hillwood, ( a Perot company, is ranked as one of the top commercial real estate developers in the country and the top residential developer in Dallas-Fort Worth. The company’s developments currently house facilities for 85 companies listed on either the Fortune 500, Global 500 or Forbes List of Top Private firms. Hillwood is best known for its development of the 17,000-acre AllianceTexas, located 15 miles northwest of DFW Airport; the $420-million American Airlines Center and Victory district near downtown Dallas; and AllianceCalifornia, the 2,000-acre redevelopment of the former Norton Air Force Base in San Bernardino.

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